Gangnam, Seoul is a town that takes pride in being the country’s center of culture, art, fashion, beauty, information technology, education, and finance. It also offers premium medical service that is on a par with others in the world.
The Gangnam Style frenzy triggered by Korean pop star Psy has made people all over the world pay attention to Gangnam. Gangnam-gu, Seoul has become a favorite destination among foreign tourists, with more than 2 million visiting every year. On June 26, the Gangnam Tourist Information Center was opened next to Hyundai Department Store in Apgujeong-dong to provide more convenient, warm-hearted service to foreign tourists and respond to the global attention. No doubt, it will become a new landmark in the area.
Apgujeong-dong where the center is located is a place that offers convenient transportation (subway, bus, taxi) and boasts of many top-notch shopping centers and medical facilities. Sinsa-dong Garosu-gil (a boulevard lined with gingko trees) and Cheongdam-dong Luxury Goods Stores Street, which have become foreign tourists’ favorite destination, are located nearby. The first bus stop for Gangnam City Tour buses is in front of the center. The place also has parking lots for tourist buses for group tourists’ convenience. The Hallyu (Korean Wave) Star Street being constructed in Cheongdam-dong is expected to be linked with the center to play the role of centerpiece of Hallyu tourism.
The two-story Gangnam Tourist Information Center has total floor space of 820㎡. The Medical Tourist Center and the General Tourist Center on the first floor will focus on publicizing Hallyu contents, tourism resources, and medical tourism. The Hallyu Hall on the second floor will provide information on how to have hands-on experience of Hallyu.
The first floor consists of the ff.: ▲ Tourist Information Desk (providing visitors with information in English, Chinese, and Japanese); ▲ Medical Tourist Center; ▲ travel agencies; ▲ money exchangers; ▲ lounge, and; ▲ Service Desk (helping visitors make reservations or buy tickets or transportation card and taking care of their bags). The second floor houses the ff.: ▲ Zone for Hands-on Experience of Digital Technology; ▲ Zone for Hands-on Experience of Hallyu Stars; ▲ Zone for Displaying Hallyu Merchandise, and; ▲ Composite Beauty Zone.
Commenting on the plan for operation, Ms. Lee Su-na, chief of the center, promised that they will provide foreign visitors with an opportunity to see the features of Gangnam aside from offering useful information and services. “We have prepared an array of programs for the hands-on experience of Hallyu and medical tourism focusing on beauty as well as the country’s first-rate information technology,” she said.
The Gangnam Tourist Center in Apgujeong-dong is the third one opened by the Seoul Tourism Organization following the two in Incheon International Airport and Myeong-dong, Seoul. The center plans to improve tourism infrastructure and develop diverse tourism contents to attract more tourists, including medical tourists, with the help of Seoul Metropolitan Government and Gangnam-Gu Office.